The third Test match between India and England will be a day-night encounter to be played at the New Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera, Ahmedabad. This will be the first international match at the largest stadium in the world, which has a capacity of 1,10,000 people and will have 50% fans in attendance.
The series is leveled 1-1 with both teams winning one Test each in Chennai and this encounter becomes extremely crucial, given that the qualification for the final of the ICC World Test Championship is on the line as well.
With that in mind, Team COC presents to you the Predicted Playing XI for Team India for the day-night Test match at the Motera, Ahmedabad.
The majority of the Indian team is expected to remain unchanged given that the BCCI didn’t make any changes to the squad for the last two Tests. Shubman Gill, Rohit Sharma, and Cheteshwar Pujara are expected to remain in the top three of the Indian batting lineup.
While Pujara and Rohit have runs behind them, Shubman Gill will want to get a big score, potentially his maiden Test century at Ahmedabad, given the importance of the match and it will be a major boost to his already good confidence.
Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane have done their best over the years and both have runs going into this match. However, Kohli has not managed a century in some time now, and getting one in the D/N Test against England will be the best time to get one.
Rishabh Pant has been the ace of spades for India when it comes to counterattacking the opposition bowling when most needed. He needs to continue doing what he does better, hit the bowlers all around the Motera stadium.
India is lucky that they might be able to play two spinners Akshar Patel and R Ashwin in a day-night Test match, thanks to both being able batsmen as well. Both Akshar and Ashwin have proven in domestic and international cricket respectively that they can handle themselves with the bat.
This becomes extremely important, as India will look to play with three genuine fast bowlers and one can expect the return of Jasprit Bumrah in the playing XI. He was rested from the second Test in Chennai, where Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Siraj did the work for India.
But given that the day-night Test is an important one not only in the WTC scenario but also in terms of the series as well, expect India to field their best bowlers, meaning Umesh Yadav, who has been reported fit to play, coming in the team. Umesh and Ishant had picked a fifer each when India played Bangladesh in their first-ever D/N Test in Kolkata in 2019.
The Test will begin on February 24 onwards from 2.30 PM IST.
COC Team India Predicted Playing XI for third Test v England:
Shubman Gill, Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (C), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (WK), Akshar Patel, R Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah